Contrary to the sensationalistic headlines appearing everywhere as of late, the big, long, RCMP report released yesterday about the Nigel Wright/Mike Duffy Senate payoff brouhaha doesn't contain much for the Prime Minister to fear. Let alone give him reason to fear for his job. And what, finally, of the Prime Minister? He makes but a brief cameo appearance in the lengthy report, during a single paragraph of Wright's testimony. Beyond that, Harper the man is entirely absent from a narrative that's very much the Duffy/Wright show. To the extent he comes up at all, the references are opaque and fleeting.
Another week of the Duffy scandal has come to a close on the Hill. It is an issue that both politicians and the public love to talk about and there is no doubt that in the short term; there will be a cost to the Conservative brand and to the Prime Minister's reputation. It won't get any easier from this point going forward.
In Mr. Fife's reporting this week, he alleges that back in February Prime Minister Harper's Chief of Staff Nigel Wright gave Senator Mike Duffy $90,000 so that Mr. Duffy could pay back a massive amount of expenses. From all this emerged an effort by the Conservative distortion machine to make Mike Duffy -- and, after his role was revealed, Nigel Wright too -- into some sort of ethical heroes. This is a strange way to behave "honourably."